When you battle chronic illness,

strength can take on a different form.

The meaning to me no longer connotes 

a Xena or Hercules statuesque frame. Throw 

out the nunchucks, throwing stars, and pointy javelins. 

 Those who suffer pain are stronger than those who inflict it. 

Strength is… 

  • Creating a healthy meal, even though your energy reserves will be siphoned from the process.
  • Praying instead of trickling downward into a spiral of self pity.
  • Getting out of bed, even when you feel like a swelled up injured elephant.
  • Dressing your best with a smile included when you would rather melt into the couch with your comfy P.J.’s
  • Refusing to bite at someone who demeans you while brain fog eludes you.
  • Facing tomorrow with hope when today brings pain and tears.
  • Forcing yourself to a time of rest, even when your type A ambitions tell you to move into action.
  • Shopping for needed groceries, when every one step feels like a triathlon race.
  • Thanking God for placing breath in your lungs, even when they are labored.
  • Refusing to allow the bitter darts of words take hold from those you love criticize when they ‘just don’t understand.’
  • Praying that God will use your pain to reshape the souls around you, including your own.
  • Counseling someone in crisis when you feel like you are on the verge of your own.
  • Being vulnerable to a safe confidant; allowing them to mourn with you, even when it’s difficult to let some one into your heart’s abode.
  • Saying goodbye to denial and denial’s friend of dangerous escapism. Pretending you don’t have issues doesn’t strengthen your resolve, for your nagging subconscious still knows reality exists. No, strength is recognizing your vulnerabilities and relying on the One who promises to be the strength in your weakness, and the calm and the squall of your storm.

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